Sen. Barrack Obama announced legislation that would provide a 50 percent tax credit to anyone who wants to build an E85 (85 percent ethanol) fuel station. The bill also would provide a tax credit of 35 cents per gallon to consumers who purchase the E85 fuel blend.

Leon Corzine, National Corn Growers' Association president, praised Obama for showing strong leadership and tackling this issue. “High energy costs affect every citizen, every business and every industry,” says Corzine, a grower from Assumption, Ill.

In introducing the legislation, Obama said the frontlines for the battle for an energy-independent America are in towns across America.

“For too long now, we’ve relied too heavily on foreign oil to fuel our energy needs in this country, and for too long politicians have passed the buck or gotten themselves bogged down in partisanship over what to do about it,” Obama said. “Oil is now above $50 per barrel. If you take into account just how much oil we import each day, that means we’re paying almost $750 million every day just for oil."

The senator said his legislation gives the United States an opportunity to “actually get something done about” energy independence. “I’ve only been in Washington for a little while, but I can tell you that it’s not often you find an issue that everyone agrees on,” he said. “But increasing the production of ethanol is something that everyone can get behind: Democrats and Republicans, Congress and the president, farmers and the ethanol industry.”

Corzine points out ethanol now makes a significant contribution to the nation’s energy needs through 10 percent ethanol fuel products. He notes that well-performing ethanol is renewable, reduces air pollution, provides jobs and a positive net energy balance by converting the sun’s energy to liquid fuel. 

National Corn Growers' Association